Veins are the vehicles through which the blood in our body circulates. The first part of circulation occurs when the heart pumps blood rich in oxygen and nutrients to feed the body’s organs. During the second part of circulation, the organs extract needed nutrients from the blood while tissues discard waste products back into the blood, which then must travel through the veins back to the heart.
The job of the veins in our legs to bring the blood back to the heart is especially difficult. The blood has to be brought back up against the force of gravity. The flow of blood is helped by the calf muscles that pump the blood and by inner valves that prevent the blood from going back down. Malfunction of this intricate, sophisticated system causes dilation of the inner veins, delaying the movement of blood back up to the heart. Delay causes blood stagnation in the veins, which results in stretchy dilated varicose formation. Clinical results can include pain, cramping, swelling and fatigue after prolonged standing. If varicose veins are left untreated, the stagnated blood can cause skin discoloration, pigmentation, bleeding, ulcer formation or even clot formation.